Just after Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) suspended his presidential campaign on Wednesday, seven youth-led progressive organizations signed an open letter to former Vice President Joe Biden expressing concerns about his ability to attract millennial and Gen Z voters and urging him to make a series of personal pledges to a progressive platform. The letter—signed by Alliance for Youth Action, Justice Democrats, March for Our Lives Action Fund, NextGen America, Student Action, Sunrise Movement, and United We Dream Action—asks the former VP, now the presumptive Democratic nominee, to reconcile division in the party in an effort to defeat President Trump.
They urge Biden to pledge to reject having any current or former Wall Street executives, corporate lobbyists, or people affiliated with the fossil fuel, health insurance, or private prison corporations on his transition team, in advisor roles, or in his cabinet, and to appoint a Department of Homeland Security secretary who is committed to dismantling ICE. In addition, the letter asks Biden to appoint elected leaders who endorsed Sanders and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) as co-chairs of his transition team, such as Reps. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), Ro Khanna (D-CA), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Katie Porter (D-CA). The groups also ask Biden to commit to eight progressive policy proposals, including a $10 trillion Green New Deal stimulus package, wealth tax, and comprehensive plan to reduce gun deaths by 50 percent in 10 years.
“With young people poised to play a critical role deciding the next president, you need to have more young people enthusiastically supporting and campaigning with you to defeat Trump,” the letter reads. “Exclusively anti-Trump messaging won’t be enough to lead any candidate to victory.”